Zale takes a quarterly loss despite good earnings report

Jewelry retailer Zale Corp., swung to a loss in the most recent quarter due to a charge related to past acquisitions, The Associated Press reports.

The Dallas-based retailer—operator of Zales Jewelers, Bailey Banks & Biddle Fine Jewelers and other chains—lost $46 million the quarter ended Jan. 31, compared with a profit of $95 million a year earlier.

The company took a charge of $136 million for goodwill because outside analysts said the Piercing Pagoda kiosk chain was worth less than the value that Zale assigned to it, the AP reports.

Excluding goodwill and other special items, the company said it would have earned $90 million, the AP reports. On the same basis, the company said, it earned $93 million a year ago.

Revenue rose 1.3% to $908 million from $897 million. Same-store sales, rose 1.1%.

President and chief executive Mary L. Forte reportedly said she was pleased with the company’s overall performance in a tough sales environment.

For the first six months of its fiscal year, Zale posted a net loss of $53 million compared to a gain of $133 million.

The company said revenue for the first half was nearly flat, $1.32 billion compared to $1.31 billion a year earlier. Same-store sales rose less than 1%.